Finding Your Tribe: Downtown Norfolk Boudoir Photographer - LeZandra Photography - Norfolk Virginia Boudoir Photography

November 4, 2015

Finding Your Tribe: Downtown Norfolk Boudoir Photographer


It was early.

I woke up feeling as though a weight was sitting on my chest. I had agreed to be a part of a team building exercise at the Adventure Park for the Modern Femme Movement.  My morning had been spent getting a sleepy toddler ready for the day and out the door before we ran late. I faked a smile at the Panera drive through…and again when I dropped my son off with his sitter. I replied “I’m fine.” before shifting my gaze to the ground when I was asked how I was doing.

A week prior a bomb was dropped on me. At least, that’s how it felt. In reality, it was the fuse that I lit years ago finally reaching the powder keg and exploding in my face. The last thing I wanted to do that morning was meet a bunch of women and put on the mask a woman who is confident and strong. I didn’t have enough fight in me to pretend that day. It was early and I just wasn’t ready. My greatest desire was to crawl back in my bed, block out all the light, and sleep until I couldn’t think.

As we gathered into a circle I looked at the women before me. Most of them were strangers. Their faces shone with excitement, even though I knew many were still waking up. They were standing tall and strong, ready to conquer their day, while I stood with my arms crossed as if trying to hold myself together.

These strangers spoke. They told me about their backgrounds. They told me their secrets. These women shared glimpses into their lives. With each passing interaction I felt my grip on myself begin to loosen. As I got to know these ladies I started to realize our similarities. I started to feel less and less alone. I was able to admit that I was not feeling okay, which is not something I ever do. I cried in front of strangers, which is also something I never do. I let myself be vulnerable for once. I was hurting and these ladies showed me warmth and compassion. These women opened their arms to me as if to say it was safe to let my emotions loose.

These women gave me strength when I had none. 

They are mothers. They are wives. They are educators. They are artists. They are creators. They are veterans. They are advocates. They are strong. They are single moms. They are entrepreneurs.

They are SO much more than their titles.

These ladies have such different paths but have been united for something incredible: support and encouragement of their fellow women.

As the day progressed I felt that pressure on my chest slowly ease until it was gone altogether. I felt so loved and supported. Words cannot describe just how much my soul needed that day.

For the first time in a long time, I realized that I was a part of something much greater than myself. In the brief time that I spent with these ladies I felt a part of myself begin to heal. I found a tribe of women that not only understand and sympathize with me, but more importantly, encourage and motivate me. They accepted me at my worst and they showed me love.

I could not be more honored to be a part of the Modern Femme Movement. Every single one of these women bring something so different to the table. Their backgrounds are so diverse and they have accomplished so much in their lives. We all go through difficult times in our lives. I am going through one right now. What gets you through the tough times is knowing that there is a community ready to push you forward when you feel like you can’t go any further.

I hope you join me and these lovely ladies at the Modern Femme Conference.

Modern Femme Movement


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